Altium Designer Documentation

Importing a Design from KiCad into Altium Designer

Created: March 11, 2020 | Updated: March 13, 2020
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Altium Designer includes the capability to import KiCad® files through the Import Wizard. The Wizard is a quick and simple way to convert KiCad design files to Altium Designer files. The Wizard walks you through the import process and handles both the schematic and PCB parts of the project, as well as managing the relationship between them.

The KiCad importer is included in Altium Designer as a software extension, which when enabled, will add a KiCad Design Files import option to the Import Wizard.

KiCad Importer Extension

To use the importer, first ensure the KiCad Importer extension is included in the Software Extensions region on the Installed tab of the Extensions & Updates view (click the  control at the top-right of the workspace then choose Extensions and Updates from the menu).

If the KiCad Importer extension is not listed or is at anytime uninstalled, the extension will need to be installed. To do so, access the Extensions & Updates view then open the Purchased tab where the KiCad Importer extension will be listed (the extensions are listed alphabetically). Click  to download the extension then restart Altium Designer when prompted.

Using the KiCad Importer

The KiCad design file importer is available through Altium Designer's Import Wizard  (File » Import Wizard) by selecting the KiCad Design Files option on the Wizard's Select Type of Files to Import page. The Wizard provides options for nominating design files (schematic and pcb) and library files, which will be imported as Altium PCB and Schematic documents.

 See the KiCad Design Files entry on the Import Wizard page for more information on the wizard's import steps.

The KiCad Import Wizard will guide you through the steps involved when importing these types of files including:

  • KiCad pro Files (*.pro).
  • KiCad sch Files (*.sch).
  • KiCad lib Files (*.lib).
  • KiCad kicad_pcb Files (*.kicad_pcb).

You have full control over where the generated Altium Designer project(s) and associated documents are to be located by specifying an output directory.

The proposed output structure is also displayed so you can see exactly what you will be getting with the import. If all is as required, proceed with the import by clicking Next. If you need to change anything, click the Back button. If you want to cancel out of the import, click Cancel.

Specify which KiCad design files and/or libraries are to be imported and other options as required.Specify which KiCad design files and/or libraries are to be imported and other options as required.

Click Add to choose which KiCad design files to include in the import process. You can delete a selected file by clicking Remove. Click Add to choose which KiCad library files to include in the import process. You can delete a selected file by clicking Remove.

Specify options as required in the General Options, Log of Analyzing, General Import Options, and Schematic Import Options dialogs.Specify options as required in the General Options, Log of Analyzing, General Import Options, and Schematic Import Options dialogs.

Use the General Options dialog to set up general log reporting options.

​Under General Settings, enable the desired options: Log All Errors, Log All Warnings, and Log All Events. The Log of Analyzing dialog lists any errors/warnings found during the scanning of the KiCad files you are importing. Use this dialog of the Wizard to review the output project structure and specify the Output Directory in which to import the files. Use the Browse Folder icon to search for and choose the Output Directory.

The Schematic Import Options dialog of the Wizard is used to set the import options for your schematic. Check the desired options.

Once the above options has been specified, the KiCad Import Wizard has completed. Once the import process completes, click Finish in the Wizard to close it. The result of the import can be seen in the Projects panel.

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